BOSTON — The Oregon men’s distance runners made the most of their final regular-season meet.
Sparked by redshirt senior James West’s NCAA indoor record-setting performance in the 1,500 meters on Thursday during the opening night of the BU Last Chance Invitational, the Ducks followed Friday with a showing that was nearly as impressive.
Charlie Hunter, Cooper Teare and Cole Hocker each ran a sub-4-minute mile, ascending the Oregon all-time list as well as solidifying their position on the NCAA Indoor Track & Field Championship qualifying list.
Hunter won in 3:55.41, followed by Teare in 3:55.50, as both finished ahead of former Duck and 2016 Olympic 1,500 gold medalist Matthew Centrowitz, who was third in 3:57.93.
Hocker, a freshman, ran his first career sub-4-minute mile, as he placed fifth in 3:58.20.
Hunter’s time moved him into second-place in program history, behind Edward Cheserek’s NCAA record of 3:52.01. Teare is now third all-time, and Hocker is tied for 14th with Andrew Wheating.
Maybe more significantly, based on the NCAA descending order list at the start of the weekend, Hunter and Teare ran the second- and third-fastest times in the country this season, securing an individual spot for Hunter in the March 13-14 national championship meet. Teare was already a lock in the 3,000.
Hocker’s time would have ranked him 14th coming into the weekend — only the top-16 declared athletes make the NCAA championships in each individual event —putting him in a more precarious spot with conference championship meets still happening across the country.
West returned from his 3:36.93 record-setting run Thursday to finish second in the 800 on Friday in a PR 1:48.67. Freshman Luis Peralta ran a PR 1:48.10 to get the win. Peralta was ranked 13th in the NCAA coming into the meet at 1:48.69. His new PR would’ve had him ranked ninth.
Also Friday, in the men’s 5,000, Marc Scott of Portland’s Bowerman Track Club finished second in a European record of 13:08.87, edging Cheserek (13:09.05) and former Duck Eric Jenkins (13:09.05), who finished third and fourth, respectively. Shadrack Kipchirchir was the winner in 13:08.25.
The women’s 3,000 was won by former Oregon star Jessica Hull in 8:56.61, and the Bowerman Track Club’s Kate Grace won the women’s 1,000 in 2:35.49.